Throughout the project, we’ll post questions and comments that have been submitted on comment cards collected at community meetings, sent via email or submitted via the website.

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1200-1222 West Fourth

Please consider zoning 1200-1222 West Fourth to CG2 to match that of adjacent parcels and permit same purpose development.
Staff Reply:

Parcel Id: 094fg002

Please consider zoning 1005-1001 University Avenue (parcel ID: 094FG002) to neighborhood commercial. This parcel contains a non-conforming commercial building currently, and a neighborhood commercial zoning would allow for better development along a major thoroughfare in Mechanicsville.
Staff Reply:

Comments On Commercial Zoning At N. Fourth And Hall Of Fame

I had a chance to look at the CN-2 and CG-2 guidelines. It does look like the C-2 would be more appropriate to the buildings on North Fourth as it allows for a setback. But both zonings require 50% of the first floor to be glass. I realize you can address this in the historic zone, but what about the [eligible for designation as historic] houses next to the Karm store if they undergo major rehab? Has this been discussed?How is the setback determined since the chart says between 0' and 20' in Commercial zones. Will historic zoning prevail in H-1?Consider CN-2 for Sassy Anns at 820 N. 4th because it was a former restaurant.Why SW-1 on one side of Scottish Pike and SW-2 on the other at location east of Railroad tracks?
Staff Reply:

Downtown Island Airport Zoning

Downtown Island Airport (KDKX) has been operated as a General Aviation airport since 1938. The zoning of this parcel as an "Airport District" will acknowledge current use, as well as protect the ability of the Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority to continue aviation-related development and use on the site.Development within the FAA's Part 77 Object Identification Surfaces associated with Downtown Island Airport (KDKX) should be controlled. Penetrations into these surfaces by man-made structures or trees can be hazardous to air travel, and development in these zones should be monitored and controlled by use of an Airport Overlay Zone. This overlay zone will protect the viability of the airport as a business development asset for the City of Knoxville and as a regional resource. Airport Overlay Zones can encourage compatible uses in the areas near the airport as well as control height of structures and vegetation. The Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority will work to generate a map and language depicting a proposed Airport Overlay Zone.
Staff Reply:

Center City Neighborhoods

I would like Parkridge to get whatever zoning more affluent, less diverse historic center city neighborhoods seem to be allowed to lobby the city for without being accused of being racist or classist. I'm all for increased density but do not understand why we have to sacrifice our historic districts for it? Aren't there plenty of other places "orange" could go that are still convenient to transit and jobs and yet perhaps just on the borders of our national registered historic districts? A very small percentage of the total area of Knoxville is taken up by these districts. I also think people who live in these neighborhoods and professional planners should be the ones to make these decisions, not whatever political group or developer thinks they have the best solution for neighborhoods they may not even live in (that may be based on extremely biased information). There are already much smaller lots here and quite a lot of multifamily housing as well as outbuildings that could be converted into ADUs, probably more than a lot of other neighborhoods in Knoxville. I do not believe opening up these center city historic neighborhoods to even more multi-family will allow for more affordable housing, but more luxury type apartments, which I'm not sure anyone but the developers want to see. I chose to live where I live because after decades of renting I wanted a historic home in a diverse historic neighborhood with the ability to walk and bike more and drive less and not contribute to more urban sprawl. Yet I wanted to be able to have a garden but not waste fossil fuels on a huge and pointless lawn. I am sure a lot of my neighbors were also motivated to buy or rent where they did for a a lot of these reasons and I think it is pretty sad to change the zoning in a way that could change the character of their street, the lighting in their yard, their parking and traffic situations all because other folks think East Knoxville should "do as we say and not as we do." But I guess it's the wealthier less diverse less dense neighborhoods that get to tell the other neighborhoods that they are the ones responsible for our housing crisis. It's easy to be dismissive and call someone a "NIMBY" but I'm fairly sure most everyone has opinions of what goes into their backyard, whether it's a luxury apartment complex or a sewage treatment plant etc. That happens when you invest your time and money into your home and neighborhood and actually have to live with the consequences of other people's decisions. I trust that our leaders and professional planners can come up with solutions that can preserve our nationally significant historic districts AND increase density and offer more affordability.
Staff Reply:

725 Sterchi Ridge Way

The new zoning proposed in the areas surrounding Sterchi Elementary School will negatively impact our north Knoxville community. The school is already over crowded and students are attending classes in portables. The last portable taking the place of the basketball court. The influx of this multi family housing units will also create more traffic and commuting issues in the already backed up areas of merchants and cedar lane. It's important for our community to grow and flourish but also take care of it's already established residents and their children. By adding these multi family units and bringing in a possible 700 housing units it would change the Sterchi community and school for the worse. People move to this area to have a sense of community and I hope the city of Knoxville and MPC will understand the importance of listening to established residents on how these changes will impact them.
Staff Reply:

Overall Views On Recode

I am happy that the city has embarked on this endeavor. The country is beginning to move away from the outdated development patterns of the last 70 years. We need to plan and work for an increase in residents over the next several decades. As population increases so does median income, productivity, and economic opportunity. We should hitch our sails to urbanization and a return to city living. But we must do this in an equitable, inclusive, and sustainable fashion. I think Recode is one of the best opportunities to achieve these goals. I am happy to see the goal of increased density across the city and more specifically along our corridors. I am a strong supporter of the ADU's in all zones idea. With strong building and size standards this is a way to add residential units within our constrained borders without having to dramatically change anything. My back window overlooks Magnolia Ave and sadly right now it is all sprawl. I have a proper view of probably 400 parking spaces that sit at average capacity of less than 5% when you consider overnight hours. We need to come up with creative ways to share parking on our corridors in order to support more intense, around the clock activity. Mixed use is another change that I whole heartedly support. The idea of apartments over retail is long-overdue. We have limited acreage in our city and the only way to continue to grow is up. My biggest concern with this whole process is the blanket alteration of neighborhoods like mine on E 5th Ave without the protections that will allow, no force! development to conform to the current aesthetic standards. I am not a stickler for keeping everything exactly how it is now, but I want to see better protections for historic structures and the prevention of demolition of our remaining beautiful housing stock. Lastly, I think that the whole city needs to be more inclusive to increased development. I see large stretches of Kingston Pike that were not upzoned for more intense development. This is and will remain one of the employment centers of the region. We need to allow for more intense development and density along Kingston Pike to attract more residents and use it as an economic springboard to a higher standard of living and upward mobility.
Staff Reply:

Rn4 In Fourth & Gill

I'm just writing to express my support for having higher density zoning in the Fourth and Gill neighborhood. I understand the concerns of some of my neighbors regarding multi-family housing and its impact on our existing historic single family homes. Certainly, there could be some blocks that are zoned RN2 to provide more protection, but I would encourage all empty lots within the historic district to remain RN4 (or RN 3 at a minimum). Additionally, areas that border the historic district or lie in between the district and major roads like Broadway, Central and 5th Avenue should be RN 3 or RN 4. Our neighborhood already has great examples of townhomes and small multifamily buildings that really add to the character and the diversity of residents that live here. Let's continue that tradition.
Staff Reply:

Rn 4 Fourth & Gill Neighborhood

Thank you for working to update the code. Many of the revisions are needed and welcome. However, I strongly object to the change to RN 4 for the Fourth & Gill Neighborhood. I have lived at 722 Luttrell St. since 1991. I love my neighborhood - the people, the old houses, the green spaces and large trees. We cannot have more density in living spaces or more traffic on our streets and maintain the integrity of our neighborhood. In the past we had a problem with people speeding down Luttrell St., but the calming circle on Caswell and Luttrell has slowed the traffic. Speed on Gill Ave. is still a problem (at least 2 dogs have been killed), and I understand that it cannot be slowed because it has to remain open for emergency vehicles. More families with small children have moved into our neighborhood, which is wonderful. We must work for fewer cars on our streets instead of increasing the traffic. We also must save the small green spaces that we have. They are used for play by children and dogs. Don't open our neighborhood to developers who want to make a buck at the expense of our neighborhood.I agree that there is a crucial need for more affordable housing. I represented low income clients on housing issues when I worked as a staff attorney with Knoxville Legal Aid. The need is even greater now than in the past. My house has a rental apartment in it, which it had when I bought it.My apartment has been a Sec. 8 unit, and it worked out well for both my tenant and for me. I am also pleased to tell you that the Fourth & Gill Neighborhood has a Housing Cooperative owned and managed by low income people. The Housing Cooperative was established in the 1980s when gentrification came into our neighborhood. There are 7 houses with 12 units in the Coop. In addition, several people in the neighborhood rent a room or apartment at below market rent in their homes. As a possible solution, I suggest that the City of Knoxville work with HUD to provide an incentive to home owners all over the City to make their rental units subsidized (Sec.8), which will increase the affordable housing available in Knoxville.I also suggest that the City explore increasing/expanding public transportation and make buses available for all (without charge) so that all people can travel freely throughout our City, and even expand the transportation throughout Knox County.
Staff Reply:

Old North Knoxville Zoning

It has been brought to my attention that there have a few buildings in the Old North Knoxville district that look as if the should be zoned more appropriately for their use. 1) 400 E Scott- This property is currently used at an RN-6 level (24 units on 24,000 sq ft lot) and should be zoned RN-6 due to density2) 428 E Scott- We would like 428 E Scott to be zoned RN-6 to support higher density residential redevelopment.3) 401, 319 and 424 E. Scott Avenue. These houses should be zoned RN-4 on E. Scott- these are already used for multifamily and should be appropriately zoned.
Staff Reply:

Opposed To Zoning Change

The latest draft has changed the zoning of the neighborhood I live in, Fourth and Gill, from RN2 to RN4. I very much oppose this and do not feel RN4 is appropriate for our neighborhood based on the majority of the use of the homes now and lot sizes. I request that we be put back to RN2.
Staff Reply:

Recode, Zone Map

I am very disappointed in the latest zoning map for my street, it has gone from RN-2 to RN-4 which will allow for multi family structures. All of fifth Ave is on the National Resister and and is already has a mixed use of single family homes along with some originally build multi family homes. Actually there are already 16 multi family homes along Fifth Ave, not counting the number of houses that have been converted to multi family homes. Parkridge has been undergoing years of reclamation from a multitude of chopped up rental houses owned by absentee land lords, which led to the blighted condition of just a few years back. Now the city is wanting to reintroduce the same conditions on this fragile neighborhood that almost led to its demise years ago.When this whole recode thing started the majority of the neighborhood residents were ok with ADUs on owner occupied proprieties, but to come now and shove multi family housing structures down our throat is a little more than disheartening, coming from a 20+ resident that has restored 4 condemned houses and has been involved in my neighborhood and city.
Staff Reply:

Fourth & Gill

With all respect and gratitude to my neighbors who have worked so hard for so many years to make this neighborhood what it is, and to fix up and restore the beautiful old houses in Fourth & Gill, I'm a fan of mixed use urban neighborhoods. I would like to see zoning that encourages diversity by including affordable housing options, and small businesses. I am also hopeful that the rezoning will encourage green space within this dense urban area, and make it a priority to encourage native plant varieties for beauty, connection to place and more diversity of the non-human kind.
Staff Reply:

Naacp Recode Comments

Please see attached.NAACP Housing Committee
Staff Reply:

Proposed Zoning Change Near Sterchi Elementary School

Hello-We live near Sterchi Elementary School where a developer is building apartments on property that is being considered for a zoning change to allow a higher density/acre.Our neighborhood cannot support additional students at Sterchi school or cars on Cedar Lane and Merchant Road.Please reject the option of rezoning this property.
Staff Reply:

Proposed Changes From Rn-2 To Rn-4

I am requesting the committee reconsider the proposed changes from RN-2 to RN-4 for the 4th & Gill neighborhood. We are a strong community with diverse housing options with the current RN-2 destination.The increases in allowed square footage from 10,000 square feet for 2 family to 40,000 square feet for multi-family would drastically change our neighborhood. I suspect there are developers already eyeing available properties to build new buildings. Or perhaps there are already plans to buy existing houses, tear them down, and build these 40,000 square foot structures. Yet our neighborhood multi-family housing that has been vacant for 20+years.Many people have worked hard for over 40 years to restore the 4th & Gill neighborhood to its former beauty and strength. A grand-father status could be given to the existing multi-family homes maintaining the current square footage designation. This would maintain the character of our neighborhood.
Staff Reply:

Building Zoning Suggestion

It has come to my attention that two buildings in the Old North Knoxville neighborhood look as if they should be zoned more appropriately for their use,1) 400 E Scott- This property is currently used at an RN-6 level (24 units on 24,000 sq ft lot) and should be zoned RN-6 due to density2) 428 E Scott- 428 E Scott to be zoned RN-6 to support higher density residential redevelopment.Additionally, there are a few apartment houses that I think have been zoned inappropriately on the same street.3) 401, 319 and 424 E. Scott Avenue. These houses should be zoned RN-4 on E. Scott- these are already used for multifamily and should be appropriately zoned
Staff Reply:

Rezone Request To Match Current And Best Uses Of Residential Properties

Hi- I'm writing to request rezoning of property based upon current density established within an R1A district. Specifically, 400 E Scott is currently used at an RN-6 level (24 units on 24,000 sq ft lot) and should be zoned RN-6 due to density. It is not zoned appropriately in current map draft.Due to precedent established, I would like 428 E Scott to be zoned RN-6 to support higher density residential redevelopment.Additionally, there are a few apartment houses that I think have been zoned inappropriately on the same street. Specifically 401, 319 and 424 E. Scott Avenue- These houses should be zoned RN-4 on E. Scott because they are already used for multifamily and should be appropriately zoned.
Staff Reply:

Rezoning

Ive seen that there are a few buildings in the Old North Knoxville district that look like they could be zoned more appropriately for their location.
  1. 400 E Scott- This property is currently used at an RN-6 level (24 units on 24,000 sq ft lot) and should be zoned RN-6 due to density
  2. 428 E Scott- I think 428 E Scott should be zoned RN-6 to support higher density residential redevelopment.
  3. 401, 319 and 424 E. Scott Avenue. These houses should be zoned RN-4 on E. Scott- these are already used for multifamily and should be appropriately zoned.
Staff Reply:

Old North Knoxville Zoning

It has been brought to my attention that there are a few buildings in the Old North Knoxville district that look as if they should be zoned more appropriately for their use.
  1. 400 E Scott- This property is currently used at an RN-6 level (24 units on 24,000 sq ft lot) and should be zoned RN-6 due to density
  2. 428 E Scott- I think 428 E Scott should be zoned RN-6 to support higher density residential redevelopment.
  3. 401, 319 and 424 E. Scott Avenue. These houses should be zoned RN-4 on E. Scott- these are already used for multifamily and should be appropriately zoned.
Staff Reply:

Rezone Knoxville Properties

Hello! It has been brought to my attention that there have a few buildings in the Old North Knoxville district that look as if they should be zoned more appropriately for their use. My thoughts and recommendations are explained further below:
  1. 400 E Scott- This property is currently used at an RN-6 level (24 units on 24,000 sq ft lot) and should be zoned RN-6 due to density
  2. 428 E Scott- I think 428 E Scott should be zoned RN-6 to support higher density residential redevelopment.
  3. 401, 319 and 424 E. Scott Avenue. These houses should be zoned RN-4 on E. Scott- these are already used for multifamily and should be appropriately zoned.
Staff Reply:

South Knoxville Rezone

My husband and I are building a house in South Knoxville on Atchley Street that will be our primary residence. I have heard about the city's master plan of the South Knoxville Waterfront and specifically the Bell Tower Walk which is on axis with Atchley. My concern is that with the I-G zoning following the old rail tracks, the Bell Tower Walk will be limited in the future and the residential district above will be disconnected from the pedestrian friendly area below. As a stakeholder in the neighborhood, I think the SW-3 zoning should continue up Atchley Street at least to Yarnell Ave to reinforce the power of that axis and be in place for future development. Regardless of whether Atchley remains predominantly residential or the Bell Tower Walk eventually moves up the hill, having SW-3 would prevent an industrial development from cutting off the neighborhood from the riverfront or the Tower Walk from being visually terminated by industrial buildings. I think this will be especially important once the Rails to Trails path is installed and large groups of people are going to it right at that point. Finally, the river is visible up to Yarnell and there is a clear connection to what is the SW zone. I think the pattern already in the plan that has SW-3 on the North end of Atchley, should continue up the hill. I appreciate the effort you all are going to and the energy everyone is putting into improving our city!! Thank you!
Staff Reply:

Rezone E Scott

It has come to my attention that two buildings in the Old North Knoxville should be zoned more appropriately for use.
  1. 400 E Scott- This property is currently used at an RN-6 level (24 units on 24,000 sq ft lot) and should be zoned RN-6 due to density.
  2. 428 E Scott- 428 E Scott should be zoned RN-6 to support higher density residential redevelopment.
  3. 401, 319 and 424 E. Scott Avenue. These houses should be zoned RN-4 on E. Scott- these are already used for multifamily and should be appropriately zoned.
Knoxville is rapidly growing and I believe this is an excellent space to put higher density apartments in due to the surrounding businesses and developments. It is in great proximity to the mountains, downtown, and campus and would attract a lot of working people looking to maximize their potential in Knoxville. I hope that this is helpful in your processes and meetings. Thanks!
Staff Reply:

Recoding Buildings In North Knox

Hello! I live on Gratz Street in 4th and Gill with a few other tenants.It has been brought to our attention that there have a few buildings in the Old North Knoxville district that look as if the should be zoned more appropriately for their use.
  1. 400 E Scott- This property is currently used at an RN-6 level (24 units on 24,000 sq ft lot) and should be zoned RN-6 due to density
  2. 428 E Scott- We would like 428 E Scott to be zoned RN-6 to support higher density residential redevelopment.
  3. 401, 319 and 424 E. Scott Avenue. These houses should be zoned RN-4 on E. Scott- these are already used for multifamily and should be appropriately zoned.
We hope our comments help! We just want what's best for this community we love!
Staff Reply:

Recoding North And South Knox

I have a few requests for specific areas of Knoxville. First, I would like to see more small homes (some might say tiny homes) built close to the city on existing home lots on the south knox waterfront areas. These small lots once held a large number of trailers, and would now be better suited to have small homes on each lot, as they would be affordable, make sense in the small space, and be easily accessible to downtown for the hip and urban youth of today. Second, we could use more high density housing in old industrial type buildings. Converting these spaces into modern lofts seems to be the norm, and it is cleaning the neighborhood up in a way that conventional apartment complexes do not. It would save the current structures and facades, and allow more dwellings inside a current space. Such as at 428 E Scott. It would great for it to be zoned RN-6 to hold a larger number of small families and singles that work and want to play downtown. Also, at 400 E Scott it should be also zoned RN-6 level as it already has something like 24 units in such a small area. I have lived in both South and North Knox for many years, and am concerned that if we do not allow things like small houses on small lots and multi-family high-density housing in old reclaimed industrial sites, we will lose many people to West Knoxville, where it looks like every other town in America. Let us keep Knoxville with the charm it currently has, and keep its residents closer to downtown so they can live, work, play, and spend their money downtown. We will all prosper because of it.
Staff Reply:

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